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Old 01-01-2015, 10:23 PM   #1
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A couple days ago I went out to try out the GoPro my wife got me for Christmas. After doing some improvised mounting on an old trolling rod I set out to see what was hiding under the bridge pilings on the mid-bay bridge. Luckily I went overkill with my line and tackle. The reds were only slot sized but were smart and kept pushing back into the structure as soon as they were hooked. I had the drag cranked down and horsed them up without an issue, for the most part, but I did finally break off on something very large that didn't care about my drag setting near the channel of the mid-bay bridge on my gold spoon. Whether it was a bull red, or one of the rare gags we get in Choctawhatchee Bay, I'll never know. A 21" and 23" red released to fight another day. One caught on live shrimp and one on a johnson gold spoon.






Then today I made a last minute trip feeling like it was a good way to break in the new year and saw the forecast isn't looking good this weekend. This time I was relying on the fish for my dinner plans. I launched out of White Point at 2pm with some frozen shrimp. After burning through a dozen or two shrimp without anything to show for it, and not feeling like taking on the sheepshead, I made the call to switch to artificials. I kept a rod with a johnson gold spoon fluttering just barely off the bottom in a rod holder while I worked a carolina rigged chartreuse/glow DOA shrimp off the bottom.

I wasn't having much luck and was hitting each and every piling for a minute or so and then moving on working my way towards the middle of the bridge. I was over half a mile out before something smashed my gold spoon while moving from one piling to another. It was a tourney contender slot red at 26" with a nice belly. I moved on, and was only a hundred yards or so from the channel when the fish finder came to life and I was showing lots of HUGE fish. Dropped the carolina rigged DOA and only had to bounce it once before it was smashed. At this point I still had the gold spoon trailing behind and this fish was a headshaker and spun the yak in circles a couple times before I got him in the kayak. He had tangled the lines pretty bad and I'm super lucky I was able to land him. It was late and I was still showing a thick school of reds but I hadn't brought my light so I had to head back to shore before the sunset.

For the day, two reds 20" and a fat 26", one on each lure over the couple hours I was out there. No break offs this time.



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Old 01-02-2015, 01:56 AM   #2
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Guess you could say, it was a good day.
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Old 01-02-2015, 04:35 PM   #3
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Guess you could say, it was a good day.
Look at that, I guess I didn't say it was. Hah! A day with some fish on is always good even if it's just a couple.
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Old 01-02-2015, 06:05 PM   #4
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Nice fish, and I can't wait to get a Go-Pro!
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Old 01-03-2015, 03:43 PM   #5
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Very nice couple of days. I tried destin bridge/coast guard yesterday and not a sniff. Cheers.
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Old 01-03-2015, 06:28 PM   #6
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Very nice couple of days. I tried destin bridge/coast guard yesterday and not a sniff. Cheers.
I've done the coast guard area from a rental boat once and didn't have any luck. From what I hear a lot of fish are there, but it is very dependent on tide movement, more so than other areas in the bay. How was the boat traffic there this time of year? I've never taken the kayak out there because of the amount boats I see in the warmer months (that's about the only time I'm there.)

Which parts of the mid-bay bridge were you hitting? In the warmer months I rarely have to go more than a quarter mile from the north shore before finding fish, but the last month I've been finding the reds almost exclusively in the deeper water around 30' and ending up paddling out a mile or so.
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Old 01-03-2015, 08:57 PM   #7
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Nice fish man! I saw from an earlier post you were thinking about hitting the Choctaw river...did you ever end up going? That's close to me as well and never had luck the one time I went.
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Old 01-03-2015, 11:41 PM   #8
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Surprisingly there were alot of boats under the bridge. maybe 6 or 8 of them . It was very windy. I started to head out to the east finger jetty but the SE wind was too much. I usually fish the midbay bridge on the south side. Its a mile peddle west for me. Thanks for the tip. I need to try fishing the middle sections of mid bay bridge. Maybe the weather man will be wrong tomorrow. Cheers.
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Old 01-03-2015, 11:58 PM   #9
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Nice fish man! I saw from an earlier post you were thinking about hitting the Choctaw river...did you ever end up going? That's close to me as well and never had luck the one time I went.
No, unfortunately I didn't. I kept making a lot of last minute evening trips. Every day the forecasts have been calling for rain, but it hasn't been coming. I definitely would like to try to free line some mullet in the deeper holes near the river mouth to see what's lurking but want to plan a day when I can work the drive there and back and still have three-four hours on the water since it's an area I've never been to.
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